THEME: CHRIST WILL COME AS KING AND JUDGE
READINGS: Ezek. 34:11-12, 15-17 / 1 Cor. 15:20-26, 28 / Matthew 25:31-46
Solemnity of Christ the King
Today is the last Sunday of the Church’s liturgical year. As the liturgical year draws to a close, the Church reminds us that the world will likewise one day come to an end with the coming of Jesus Christ in His royal majesty. Hence, the Church celebrates every last Sunday of the liturgical year as the solemn feast of Christ the King.
CHRIST THE KING
According to today’s gospel reading, Christ will come again as a King in glory, accompanied by the angels (cf. Matt. 25:31). Indeed, He will come as the King of kings! On that day, all people including all kings and presidents, dead and alive, believers and nonbelievers, will bow and acknowledge Christ as the King of kings and the Lord of lords!
Yes, He who is coming is great. Indeed, He is the greatest! Christ is greater than all and has power to defeat and subject all powers of darkness. Thus, the second reading says that Jesus will defeat every sovereignty, authority, power as well as the evil of death (1 Cor. 15:25-28).
Beloved, I pray that while we await His glorious second coming, Christ the all-powerful King of kings, will destroy any power of darkness we encounter in our lives. Amen!
CHRIST THE JUDGE
Christ will come not only as King but also as the Judge of all. Thus, according to the gospel reading, “all the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats” (Matt. 25:32).
Beloved, how then do we dispose ourselves so that Christ the Judge reckons us as part of His sheep? To become part of the sheep on the right side of Christ in the future, we must even now submit to His kingship. In other words, we must allow Christ to rule our personal lives every day. When we do this, we will not be afraid of meeting Christ on the last day; rather, we will be eager to meet Him, whom we please every day.
How then do we enthrone Christ as the King of our personal lives? By both faith and action. What kind of faith? Faith in the Father, in Jesus Christ, in the Holy Spirit, and in what Christ has taught us about eternal life (John 14:1-6, 15-16; 17:2-3) – a faith which influences our actions. What kind of actions? Today’s gospel reading (Matt. 25:31-46) tells us the sort of actions Jesus our King expects of us:
- To feed the hungry
- To give drink to the thirsty
- To care for the stranger
- To clothe the naked
- To care for the sick
- To visit the imprisoned.
In short, we please our King and Judge by performing the above-mentioned actions and similar ones. May we, therefore, always be eager to help the needy! And may every help we give put a smile, not only on the face of the beneficiary, but also on the face of Christ the King and Judge! Amen! And may every help we give consolidate our portion among the privileged sheep at the right side of Christ the King and Judge! Amen!
By Most Rev. John Kobina Louis